Creighton absorbed its first loss of the year last weekend at St. Joseph’s. In that game Doug McDermott scored 26 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. If you are a college basketball fan and you haven’t had an opportunity to watch the sophomore play (and chances are you haven’t if you’re reading this outside of the Omaha area) then do yourself a favor and try to tune him in. His father, Greg McDermott, is the Bluejay coach and you can tell that this kid has absorbed a lot of knowledge of the game of basketball. In high school he teamed with North Carolina’s own super sophomore Harrison Barnes to win back-to-back state titles. This past summer he played nine games with the likes of Tim Hardaway, Jr. (Michigan), Jeremy Lamb (Connecticut) and Keith Appling (Michigan St.) on the USA Basketball under 19 team. In those games he was the third leading scorer, third leading rebounder and led the team in three point percentage (on 33 attempts; also good for third on the team).
McDermott is 6’7” but plays taller because of his long arms, quick release and body control. To borrow a term from Dick Vitale, this kid can flat out play. He may well end up being the best Creighton Bluejay to ever put on the uniform. For comparison to recent college stars think former Butler star Gordon Hayward with better post moves but without the ball handling skills. Comparisons to one of Creighton’s best ever, sharp shooter Kyle Korver are inevitable. Through 8 games McDermott is averaging a robust 24 points and 9 rebounds and is on pace to better Korver’s career stats in nearly every category. The question is where is his ceiling? My guess, it’s pretty high. If McDermott can continue to refine his game over the remainder of his college career he has a chance to be drafted by an NBA team and play professionally for a long time.
But first things first; Creighton next plays a home game against Houston Baptist (December 17) and on the road at Tulsa (December 19). The next chance to catch McDermott and the Jays out of market is December 22 when the Jays host Jon Shurna and his Northwestern Wildcats. If you tune in to any of these games you won’t be disappointed that you did.